50th Anniversary

When I was a kid, my brother and I both devoured science fiction paperbacks that our uncle Lou would bring us. Asimov, Heinlein, Bradbury were the mainstays. Then when I got a little older I discovered LeGuin, James Tiptree Jr. and the more philosophical side of SciFi.

I can still remember my first time reading Bradbury’s R is for Rocket and S is for Space, and Heinlein’s The Menace from Earth and The Green Hills of Earth. And of course Asimov. The Foundation trilogy and all those robot stories filled my head with wonder.

So to me, amidst all the weird things that grownups were actually up to — fighting pointless wars, assassinating any inspiring leader with a dream, breaking into hotels to subvert democracy — one thing stood out. Grownups went to the moon and walked on it.

One day the TV was just showing space fantasies like Star Trek and Lost in Space. Then suddenly it was showing the real life version of the science fiction dreams of my childhood.

When I was a kid, real-life grownups were capable of levels of collective idiocy that no child can ever comprehend, and sadly, they still are. Yet for one day those grownups achieved a level of grace that allowed children around the world to believe that a better and nobler world is possible.

All these years later, I still believe it. Just maybe, I have that first footstep on the moon to thank.

One Response to “50th Anniversary”

  1. HItoshi says:

    I still feel something when I just recall about The Only Neat Thing to Do by James Tiptree Jr., even I read it more than 20 years ago. It is still one of my favorite. I also feel thank the footstep on the moon.-Hitoshi

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